What To Look For In A Lock And Handle

What To Look For In A Lock And Handle

External doors are the most important due to the obvious security nature, so we wanted to look at the lock and handle combination. The locks we use at Architectural Choice are some of the best euro mortice locks in the world and trusted by installers all over. The handles are no different with the patented metallic rose. It has a compensating spring, is reversible and armoured and with anti-friction and anti-noise mechanisms it’s one of the most reliable rosettes on the market. This is all part of why its important to select the correct products for each project and here are 5 things to look for. All of these can start with one question.

Quality Materials

What type of materials are the locks and handles made from?

This is the first thing that needs to be looked at. Are the component materials coming from the same factory? Ensure they are as the manufacturer needs to check on these prior to assembly.

At Architectural Choice we use the highest-grade stainless steel for base materials for our products. There are some elements of brass included in the euro cylinders and mortice locks. These are assembled at the JNF Architectural factory in Europe where there are several departments, including quality control – see below.

Image of the JNF quality control department. It is largely white, looking like a lab.

Durable Construction

Are the products going to last? Durability is equally important as the materials because you can’t have one without the other. If the required products call for matt black for example, are they going to look the same and work the same in a years’ time? Two years time? Most likely the answer is going to be no. Well Architectural Choice can say our matt black, and our other PVD finish, will with confidence.

Picture of the PVD machine and sorting area.

This finish is achieved by PVD (Physical Vapor Deposition) technology. It is a non-galvanic, non-polluting process, widely used in the watchmaking industry. The steel is polished or satin, obtaining parts in shiny or satin titanium. It is a finish of exceptional quality, giving the final product an additional hardness and a very high corrosion resistance.

Now of course every product needs maintenance to keep it looking and working great and a lock and handle is no different, no matter the brand. That doesn’t mean you should need to change your matt black door hardware after a year or so because it has a white chalky film over it or is wearing down to the base material.

Easy Installation

Are these products going to be easy to install? It doesn’t matter if you are installing yourself or paying a professional to do it, which we always recommend by the way, it will save you time and money getting quality products that are easy to install.

Are there any install guides such as the EP1 Tool that helps with alignment of door handles? The alignment is always the most important aspect and once you get that right the process should a positive one.

Good Design

Is this a product with good design? We don’t mean the style and look, although that is a portion of this too. We mean design as in are there any factors that have made this product easier for the end consumer to use?

Image of the JNF design department. It has computers and screens in a room not occupied by anyone.

This can also be worked into the previous chapter. A good design for a lock and handle means they “talk” with one another as elements. Take the Architectural Choice range of products. The euro mortice locks have through holes at the same dimensions as the door handle rosettes. These products were made for each other and that was a particular part of the design brief.

In terms of styling, there isn’t a manufacturer that has designs from every era, however it’s important to select one that has multiple designs from that era.


What function is required? This is mainly to do with a simple choice of euro cylinders. When you set out to select your entry door hardware think about whether you would like a key lock on each side of the door or a key on the outside and a turn snib on the inside. This shouldn’t be a problem at all when doing selections, it’s just an important one to tick off before it becomes a problem at the end after orders have been placed for the other elements. Once these 5 things have been considered its time to specify and/or order the products required.

At Architectural Choice we wanted to back up previous statements of making things easier, so we are going to offer our specifiers and customers the chance to select an entire locking package that consists of course a lock and handle, but also has a euro cylinder and escutcheons. Our kits are up on the website now and the beauty is it’s not just easier to order, there are loads of savings to be had.

To order simply go directly to the Homepage and scroll to the Door Handle Kits section. When you get into the page you simply select the handle design you would like and 95% of it is done. It’s that simple, we will take care of the rest and send the entire kit out to you. We will be adding to the kit range via pull handles, passage kits, privacy kits and many other options to make selections easier soon, but in the meantime if you want to put a package together ask our friendly team to do so.

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